South Africa: Many HIV-Positive Patients in the Eastern Cape Survive Covid-19, Webinar Told

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Doctors working in an Eastern Cape hospital where there are high rates of HIV infections have said during a webinar that they have not lost a single patient to Covid-19 who was HIV-positive only -- but all who were HIV-positive with added comorbidities such as diabetes and high blood pressure died after testing positive for the virus. Ten patients died at the hospital over one weekend after the oxygen supply ran out.

A webinar on Covid-19 in the Eastern Cape, organised by the World Health Organisation, the African Forum for Primary Healthcare and the World Organisation for Family Doctors was moderated by Professor Shabir Moosa, a family physician in the Department of Family Medicine at Wits University.

Moosa said while globally there had been a number of excess deaths, it is still unknown whether these patients were unreported Covid-19 cases or if their deaths were from a different cause.

Dr Ramprahash Kaswa, a family physician at Walter Sisulu University and acting CEO of Mthatha Regional Hospital said most of the patients they received were already very sick when they arrived at the hospital.

He explained that as their patients come from the OR Tambo district, where a high percentage of...

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